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100 years of jazz in Rotterdam

Ahoy Rotterdam is hosting the biggest indoor jazz festival in the world: NN North Sea Jazz. Several big names have been announced, including Grammy winner Anita Baker, Young Gun Silver Fox, Rag’n’Bone Man, Toto, Janelle Monáe, Ms. Lauryn Hill, Burt Bacharach, Diana Krall, Jamie Cullum, Joe Jackson, Chance the Rapper, Jonathan Jeremiah and Marc Broussard.

Every year, jazz club BIRD organises the now legendary NN North Sea Jazz Festival after party: BoogieBall. On 12 and 13 July, artists will come along to BIRD after their show to DJ or play a jam session. The line-up is still a surprise!


Before the NN North Sea Jazz Festival, the North Sea Round Town fringe festival is organising many – often free – accessible events throughout the city. Some highlights from the programme:

  • The Jazz Night Express will run between Rotterdam – Amsterdam – Berlin on 28 and 29 June. Besides a varied jazz programme, the train will have a restaurant and several bars.
  • On Friday 28 June, from midnight to 8 a.m., you can enjoy jazz concerts and a 360-degree view on the top floor of De Rotterdam (OMA/Rem Koolhaas).
  • The Jazzschip will travel down the Maas on Saturday 29 June from 3.30 p.m. to 9.00 p.m. In addition to the performances on board, the boat will visit several industrial port locations where concerts are also taking place.
  • On Saturday 13 July, the audience in the Laurens Church, the oldest building in Rotterdam, will take their places in comfortable loungers. Everyone will be blindfolded so that they can experience the music ‘as likeminded people’, without being able to see anything. Just surrounded by virtuoso sounds from the trio Under the Surface.

Jazz hotspots in Rotterdam

On six Sundays, Kunsthal Rotterdam is organising free live music in the Museumpark under the heading Kunsthal LIVE OP ZONDAG [LIVE ON SUNDAY]. The series kicks off on Sunday 7 July with Rotterdam rapper Winne. There will also be performances by Magda Mendes, Koffie and Seis&Salsa, curated by Maite Hontelé. Combine a concert with a visit to the exhibition ‘Street Dreams. How fashion took over hiphop’.

In the hidden courtyard garden of Het Industriegebouw, this summer you can watch performances by Dwayne Franklin & Daddy Jacob and Beau Zwart and supported by DJs Sykes and Oscar Poeisz. Mexican restaurant Alfredo’s Taqueria will be serving summer cocktails and tacos. All day American diner By Jarmusch provides the American BBQ and Beers.

100 years of jazz in Museum Rotterdam

In Museum Rotterdam, the centenary of jazz in Rotterdam will be marked with a mini expo. The exhibition describes the rise of jazz from the interbellum through to the years of the occupation of Rotterdam. Jazz in Rotterdam is on show from 27 April to 8 September 2019.